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How to create a bodybuilding diet that you can stick to and gain weight, build muscle and improve your physique?
An integral part of how to gain weight is to eat enough to meet your body’s increasing caloric needs during workouts. You’re in the gym hefting weights and pounding diverse equipment – but unless you match your exercise with good, healthy and appropriate nutrition, you can’t gain weight or bulk up muscle.
Nutrition is essential for both muscle recovery and growth. And nothing is static about a bodybuilding diet. As your muscle mass grows, the demands of your body change. You’ll have to eat more and keep track of your calorie count and modify it suitably from time to time.
How to do this? What is your ideal bodybuilding diet? Let’s discuss that now.
Monitor Your Weight
Use regular bathroom scales to measure your weight regularly. Do it at a fixed time, say first thing in the morning. Is your weight steadily going up – or down? If you are working out regularly but not gaining weight, it is possibly because your bodybuilding diet is inadequate.
Look at yourself in the mirror. Is your belly becoming bigger? Or are you gaining weight only on your buttocks? Some types of food are prone to increase fat deposition around your waist. Modifying your nutrition to eliminate them will get rid of the excess fat.
Use Body Fat Calipers
If you measure your body fat using calipers every 2 weeks, you can see if the extra weight you’re gaining is fat or muscle. Make sure you get measured using good equipment and by an expert. Then use standard charts to calculate your total body fat and lean muscle mass.
Document this in a record. When your bodybuilding diet is optimal, you will gain fat free mass and lose total body fat. If the reverse happens, it means your body is breaking down muscle for energy and this happens when you are not eating enough food for the amount of exercise you’re doing.
Planning Your Bodybuilding Diet
How to devise your own nutrition plan?
The first step is to calculate the amount of calories you require, as we discussed in this article about how to gain weight. You can determine how many calories your bodybuilding diet should provide so that, over and above what your body burns off, you will have extra to build muscle.
Once you know how much food you need, you’ll have to decide what form you will eat it in. Jason Ferruggia’s program, Muscle Gaining Secrets, has an excellent guide (along with 10 minute recipes) which give you several options based on your dietary preferences. (Read our Muscle Gaining Secrets review – click here) These meal plans can be used as your blueprint during the time you workout to gain weight.
Typically, you will eat 5 to 8 meals every day. The ideal bodybuilding diet will be rich in protein and carbs but low on fat for ease of digestion. The evening meal, for example, will have 36 grams of protein, 60 grams of carbohydrate, but only 13 grams of fat.
Which Are The Best Bodybuilding Foods?
Several charts are available for you to calculate the caloric value and composition of different bodybuilding foods. The top 7 that should find a place in your bodybuilding diet include:
1. Egg Whites – It’s the best source of dietary protein, and along with oatmeal or as an omelet, it can be a delicious yet powerful meal. Six egg whites in an omelet will provide over 20 grams of dietary protein.
2. Top Round Steak – Lean cuts of red meat are nearly all protein. If it’s an inch thick with no visible fat, that’s best for a bodybuilding diet.
3. Salmon – Rich in good fat, fresh salmon (bright orange) is excellent to build muscle and gain weight.
4. Chicken Breast – Bodybuilders swear by chicken – and for good reason. A 6 ounce serving delivers almost 40 grams of protein and over 200 calories.
5. Sweet Potatoes – Carbohydrate rich, they are an excellent source of energy calories in a bodybuilding diet.
6. Tenderloin Pork – Tastier than chicken, lower in fat, and rich in protein, this often overlooked body builder food makes for a good addition to your diet.
7. Asparagus – No kidding! It leaches water and provides fiber. Boil and serve crisp and tender.
Other popular favorites in a bodybuilding diet are low fat cottage cheese, tuna and turkey breast. Muscle Gaining Secrets has some unorthodox options as well, which may tickle your taste buds or be available in your region. Check them out too.
What To Watch Out For?
You should be gaining weight. If you’re not, eat more carbs and protein. If you’re gaining weight but it’s just as much fat as muscle, cut out carbs except immediately after a workout.
If you’re losing body fat, you should increase your protein intake a little. And if your body fat actually increases, lower carbs in your last 2 meals of the day. With minor tweaks, your bodybuilding diet can take you closer to your goals. Muscle Gaining Secrets gets deeper into nuances which can help you if you’re serious about gaining weight and building muscle.
Comprising of 197 pages in total, Jason Ferruggia’s guide “Muscle Gaining Secrets” teaches simple yet effective muscle building exercises for natural weight gain and body building.
It reveals “the secrets all skinny guys need to know about building muscle” – and it works even for hard gainers.